Talks to end violence, as violence rolls on

In a few short hours, 2 shootings . . . and homicide toll hits 99

WITHIN the span of a few hours early yesterday morning, the city's sky-high homicide tally reached 99.

Renee Gardner, 37, who was shot several times in the stomach, was found by cops about 3 a.m. inside her home on Franklin Street near Moyamensing Avenue in South Philly.

Exterior of 2324 S. Franklin St., scene of homicide yesterday.

Gardner was taken to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and pronounced dead about 3:30 a.m.

Her husband was being questioned yesterday, but he had not been charged, homicide detectives said last night.

A woman near the scene yesterday who identified herself only as the victim's cousin said, "She was a real nice lady.

"She did what she should have been doing," the woman added. "She went to work took good care of her kids, and didn't bother anybody."

When asked to confirm reports that Gardner's husband may have been involved in her death, the woman replied only, "It's a family matter and I'd rather not get into the details right now."

A few hours earlier, a Germantown man was fatally shot on Haines Street near Crittenden.

Police said James Williams, of Church Lane near Chew Avenue, had been wounded several times in the torso and was pronounced dead shortly after 11 p.m. Thursday at Albert Einstein Medical Center.

Homicide detectives were still trying to piece together a motive for Williams' slaying. *